Prime Minister, Hon. Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips and CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque today turned the sod for the construction of a residence building for the CARICOM Secretary General.
The simple ceremony was held Friday afternoon. Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hugh Todd, MP, also attended.
“We’re still in the design stage, where you know the architect will do their work and then a costing will be done and in consultation with the CARICOM Secretariat, and the Secretary General,” the Prime Minister said.
PM Phillips said while the commencement date has not been confirmed; the project would start soon.
The CARICOM building will be constructed in Pradoville, East Coast Demerara.
Meanwhile, Ambassador LaRocque said there has been a need for an official residence and that need has been recognised by the President.
“I think it’s a great, great moment, it’s not just a ceremony. I think it demonstrates the commitment of the Government of Guyana to CARICOM.
“We have to remember that this is the seat of the headquarters of the Community… [and] the Secretariat has a meaning and here will have a meaning.”
Ambassador LaRocque also said the plans for this building has not been in the pipelines for a long time and as such he is honored to do the sod turning and to commence the construction.
The Ambassador said this will be his last official project as CARICOM Secretary-General and he believes that two terms in office is adequate, and therefore he is “pass[ing] the baton on to somebody with fresh ideas, fresh set of energy to go forward.” Ambassador LaRocque retires this year.